Biden elects Avril Hains as director of national intelligence

WASHINGTON – Joe Biden has selected Avril Hains, who, under President Barack Obama, has held senior positions in national security to be director of national intelligence in his administration.

After serving as a national security lawyer and deputy director of the CIA for 51 years, Haines played a key role in national security during the Biden transition. She will be the first woman in a DNI job created after the 9-11 attacks to better coordinate the U.S. intelligence bureaucracy.

Among other things, the DNI oversees the presidential intelligence briefing process. But the DNI does not carry out covert operations ordered by the President – the CIA Director retains that power.

Biden’s interim team announced seven Biden cabinet elections on Monday, including Haines, “all those who keep their promise that their administration looks like America.” Other choices included Alejandro Mayorkas as head of the Department of Homeland Security, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, and John Kerry, Special Envoy for the Climate. .

Former CIA deputy directors Michael Morell and David Cohen, who also advised on the Biden transition, are seriously considering intelligence work, several people informed about the case told NBC News.

From 2007 to 2008, Haines was Deputy Chief Adviser to the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee when he was then Senator. Biden was the president.

He joined the State Department in 2008 as a legal adviser, and in 2010 he became Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy President for National Security at the White House.

From 2013 to 2014, she served as Deputy Director of the CIA, and she was the first woman to hold this position. In this role, he decided not to discipline CIA staff who got into an argument with the Senate Intelligence Committee, which accused the CIA of improperly accessing the committee’s computers.

In 2014, he returned to the White House to be Deputy National Security Adviser.

In 2018, Gina Haspel spoke in favor of nominating CIA directors, even when opposed by some Democrats, on the grounds that Haspel ran a secret CIA prison where al-Qaeda prisoners were tortured.

Haines’s summary also includes some strange twists. In the mid-1990s, there was an independent bookstore and coffee shop in Baltimore that hosted “erotic evenings,” as the history of the Baltimore Sun mentioned at the time. In 1997, Baltimore City Paper named the store “Best Independent Bookstore.”

He previously spent a year at the University of Tokyo, where he earned a brown belt in judo, according to a Newsweek profile.

Since leaving the Obama administration, Haines has been affiliated with Columbia University and the Brookings Institute and consulted with various companies, including National Security Data Entrepreneur Palantir, according to a Brookings biography uncovered by Intercept. A source familiar with his work for Palantir confirmed to NBC News, saying he had advised the firm on promoting diversity and the role of women in technology.

Carol E. Lee and Andrea Mitchell consented.